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The Baptism of Saint Olav (oratorio)

kr 179,00

Physical CD


Olav Haraldson, later king and patron saint of Norway, first came to Rouen with a large fleet in the autumn of 1013. The fleet was hired by the Duke of Normandy to mount guard on the Seine to stop other Vikings from travelling up the river towards Paris. Olav’s men observed and learnt much during their stay. They experienced state administration, legislation and encountered Christianity, a new way to see the existence of man, and ended the sojourn by being baptized in 1014.

When this large number of men came back to Norway, they influenced the nation in a way not previously experienced. This became a turning point in history, not only in Norway, but across the entire area of northern Europe. In Sweden one hundred churches were dedicated to Olav, in England thirty – the earliest, which is still an active parish church, in York in 1050. In London there were six Olav churches. The very first church dedicated to Olav, was founded in Constantinople in 1033.

On Sunday 19th October 2014, a relic of Saint Olav is to be presented to the Cathedral of Rouen. He will, after 1000 years, return to the point where he started; a very good reason for staging an oratorio dedicated to Olav.

This CD is a live recording from the world premiere in Stavanger concert hall the 17th of September 2014.

Stevica Krajinovic (Olav)
Nina Sætherhaug (Sunniva)
Hervé Lamy (The Archbishop)
Jean Pascal Ollivry (The Duke)
Runar Thor Gudmundsson (The Icelander)

Organ: Gabriel Marghieri (Improvisations)

Polyphonic choir: Stavanger Oratorio Choir and Rouen Cathedral’s Chamber choir
Gregorien choir: Schola Sanctus Svithun and Choeur Grégorien de Paris
Orchestra: Rouen Opera Orchestra

Conductor: Ole Karsten Sundlisæter

The libretto is found in the booklet in Norwegian, English and French.


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